Salmonella outbreak reported in Iowa County, linked to potato salad

Published: Jul. 26, 2016 at 12:39 PM CDT
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UPDATE: The Iowa Department of Public Health said they are investigating approximately 20 cases that may be related to this outbreak.

Original story:

The Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals and the Department of Public Health are investigating after 13 cases of Salmonella were reported in Iowa County last Friday night.

Department of Inspections and Appeals spokesman Dave Werning said Tuesday that early indications show that many of the ill individuals ate potato salad from the Big G Food Store in Marengo.

"Big G’s “Zesty Potato Salad” and “Traditional Potato Salad” have been implicated in several cases of foodborne illness reported in Iowa County. Presumptive test results from the State Hygienic Laboratory at the University of Iowa indicate the presence of salmonella in these products," the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals said in a news release issued on Monday.

One of the people believed to be infected tells KCRG-TV9 that the salad was widely consumed after a funeral last Thursday. Many of the funeral guests reported becoming ill, the source said.

"We want to make sure all our customers are safe with the purchases they make at Big G. If you have purchased any Big G made potato salad from the full service case dated July 14-24 please throw it away. Something in the salad can make you sick," Big G said in a facebook posting on their page. "Bring your receipt in for a full refund. This does not include Resers or Mrs Gerrys salads from the self service case. We are testing to find out the cause of the problem. You, our customer, are very important to us. Big G wants to make sure you are safe in everything you purchase from us."

The following tips to avoid salmonella contamination were provided to KCRG-TV9 by Iowa State University Extension and Outreach:

Quick Tips for Preventing Salmonella (taken from CDC):

• Cook poultry, ground beef, and eggs thoroughly. Do not eat or drink foods containing raw eggs, or raw (unpasteurized) milk.

• If you are served undercooked meat, poultry or eggs in a restaurant, don't hesitate to send it back to the kitchen for further cooking.

• Wash hands, kitchen work surfaces, and utensils with soap and water immediately after they have been in contact with raw meat or poultry.

• Be particularly careful with foods prepared for infants, the elderly, and the immunocompromised.

• Wash hands with soap after handling reptiles, birds, or baby chicks, and after contact with pet feces.

• For answers to food safety questions, visit or call Iowa State University Extension and Outreach’s AnswerLine at 1-800-262-3804.